Living Amidst the ShadowsRoger Berkowitz
Suzy Hansen writes about the photographs and the journey of Turkish photographer Emin Özmen as he has documented Turkey’s descent from a democracy on the cusp of joining the European Union to an autocracy. Hansen collaborates with Özmen whose haunting photographs make palpable sense of powerlessness in Erdogan’s Turkey.
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Between LanguagesRoger Berkowitz
When asked by Günter Gaus what was irretrievably lost when she had to flee the Nazis and leave Germany and Europe behind, Hannah Arendt answered: “The Europe of the pre-Hitler period? I do not long for that, I can tell you. What remains? The language remains.” In a profile of the writer Lydia Davis, Wyatt Mason dives into this question of how knowing many languages changes and enriches a writer.
The Nature of TotalitarianismListen to the great Jean-Luc Godard deliver a monologue from Hannah Arendt’s essay “The Nature of Totalitarianism.”
Link to video
Literally UnmentionableRoger Berkowitz
Professor David Bleich of the University of Rochester has been suspended from teaching because he spoke aloud the n-word while reading from a short story.
Thinking is Out of OrderRoger Berkowitz
In her last book The Life of the Mind, Hannah Arendt writes that “thinking is out of order.” Thinking frees us from the world of appearances and allows us to think things beyond our common sense that we share with others. In this way, thinking is not about the pursuit of truth but it is, Arendt argues, about the pursuit of meaning. Thomas Bartscherer meditates on Arendt’s characterization of thinking as out of order.
The Catherine ProjectRoger Berkowitz
Scott Samuelson reports on his experience teaching the humanities for free with the Catherine Project, named for “Catherine of Alexandria, the scholar who refuted the crusty academics who’d been hired to refute her—and then suffered an ancient form of cancellation.”
Hard to TakeRoger Berkowitz
Robert Zaretsky looks back to Arendt’s account of the trial of Adolf Eichmann to help make sense of our own failures in thinking through the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse.
Arendt’s Anti-RacismRoger Berkowitz
Connor Grubaugh argues that Hannah Arendt’s often-maligned essay “Reflections on Little Rock” offers clues to overcoming new clashes between what he calls “race-conscious and colorblind” advocates in anti-racist movements today.
The Soul Lit Suddenly From Within
Wyatt Mason writes about translating poetry and specifically Charles Baudelaire’s Les Fleurs du Mal. Amidst long ruminations on Baudelaire’s rhythmic syllables, Mason highlights the poet’s fight against all that is common.